At last year's CBS upfront, newly minted Late Show host Stephen Colbert was barely a mention. His Colbert Report follow-up had been off to a slow start, and rumors of the network flipping his late-night talk show with James Corden's were swirling.
But since Donald Trump has taken office, Colbert's ratings have soared. Now the most watched host in late night, Colbert took center stage at CBS' upfront presentation held at Carnegie Hall on Wednesday.
“If you think I love him more because he's number one now," joked CBS Corp. CEO Les Moonves onstage, "you're right.”
After kicking off the evening with a song-and-dance routine that touted the broadcast net's slate, he segued into a standup set aimed at Donald Trump and his administration.
Here, The Hollywood Reporter rounds up Colbert's 10 best jabs at Trump.
1. I want to welcome the hot new star of Criminal Minds, James Comey.
2. I could not have done it without a visionary leader, a legend of television who made the Late Show what it is. Thank you, Donald Trump. It is an honor every night to be onstage and talk about that day’s Trump scandal.
3. Unfortunately, the hour I’m spending onstage often means I’m missing the breaking news of tomorrow’s Trump scandal. So by the time my monologue airs, I can sound as out-of-touch with what’s going on at the White House as Sean Spicer does.
4. Speaking of Sean Spicer, I don’t know if you’ve seem him lately. It helps to have a pair of hedge trimmers around.
5. I think of what I’m doing here today kind of like a White House press conference. I’m out here, I’m just going to say whatever my boss told me to, and when it’s over I will leave without answering any of your questions.
6. I have to say, this administration has been just as strange as I imagined it would be. At this point, there’s really only one word to describe this president, and the FCC has asked me not to use it anymore.
7. I don’t know if you heard but the president recently had some harsh things to say about me. He said my language is not appropriate for the Late Show because kids are watching. Who says only old people watch CBS? Clearly, we’re No. 1 in the coveted demo of 6- to 12-year-old politically engaged insomniacs.
8. I will say, the president and I do have some things in common. We’re both TV hosts who spend most of our time talking about Donald Trump. Of course, unlike Mr. Trump, my guest knows they’re being taped.
9. I understand if the president doesn’t particularly like my show. But thankfully, like his votes on election day, he is in the minority — because right now the Late Show in No. 1 in late night.
10. Today you will learn about our exciting new fall lineup, unless the president has already leaked it to Russia. I hear Vladimir Putin just finished binge-watching the first season of Young Sheldon.